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Old 05-24-2002, 11:17 PM   #1
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Time to replace my PC bulbs

Its been about a year since I got my first PC blubs and its time to replace them.

I know I have to look at the pin design to know if they are in the :: or .... format. I currently have 36W jobs but I am thinking of putting 55Wers into my 20 gal.

I got my bulbs the first time from Ahsupply.com

What other sources have people used for their bulbs.

I heard that actinic bulbs in PC are out and they are now true actinic vs just blue bulbs like they used to be.
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Old 05-25-2002, 12:28 AM   #2
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I have heard good things about Hello Lights, you might also try Champion Lighting & Supply(although I don't know how their prices will compare), and check Big Al's Aquarium & Tropical Fish Supply (they say they'll beat anyones advertised price).

You should definitely spend the extra money on the True .03 Actinic bulbs. Your reef will love you for it.

I do not know about the versitility of the PC ballasts, make sure your ballast is capable of the upgrade in bulbs before you order them. I can say from personal experience that 2 X 55W PC on a 20H is pretty spectacular. I was able to grow T. croceas and T. maximas in one.
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Old 05-25-2002, 12:36 PM   #3
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Ok well I sent an e-mail off to Ahsupply.com but I wanted everyone's option as to what this page says. 36-55W kits It seems to me that they use the same ballast and the only difference is that the 55W bulb is a little longer.

If thats the case then I am looking at maybe 1 10K and 1 .03 55W PC for my 20H. Or should I go with 2 50/50 10K/03 bulbs? I have the german connector style that is ....

Of the vendors listed above I think I am going to go with HELLOLIGHTS

They have the following lights available. I am correct in wanting the 10K in conjunction with the 03 correct? Or should I combine the 03 with another temperature.

6700K
8800K
10K
20K
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Old 05-25-2002, 06:24 PM   #4
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I don't understand how they can light a 3' PC bulb with a 55 watt ballast.. ?!?

But then I 'm not a physicist and I can't spell well.
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Old 05-25-2002, 06:32 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bang Guy
I don't understand how they can light a 3' PC bulb with a 55 watt ballast.. ?!?
I believe a 36W bulb is between 17 and 18 inches long, 55W is about 24 inches long. I didn't see where it had to light a 3 ft bulb (96W). I saw a reflector that was about 35 inches, but it was for a 2 X5 5W, and I assume you get the extra for a 36 inch tank and want to stagger the bulbs?

From what I saw it is the same ballast for a 36W or a 55W.
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Old 05-25-2002, 10:34 PM   #6
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I got an e-mail back from them that said the only thing I needed to worry about in the upgrade was if the 55W bulb would fit in my canopy. There is no problem there as the 55W bulb is just a few inches longer than a 36W bulb.

So should I go with a 10K and a 03 or two 50/50's?

Or a 8800K and a 03?


Probably put the order in toward the end of next week given that I will be leaving for danny's grand opening this thursday.
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Old 05-25-2002, 11:18 PM   #7
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My preference is a 10K and an actinic. I think I read Guy (known to us as Bang Guy) post once that buying 50/50 was wasting some money. The phosphurs in the actinic break down quicker, so if you go with 2-50/50's you'll have to replace both bulbs on an accelerated schedule, where if you go with one daylight and one actinic, only one will need to be replaced more often.
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Old 05-25-2002, 11:44 PM   #8
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Maybe guy can enlighten us with the replacment schdule of the actinic bulbs. I know they say 10,000hours on the websites that sell them. But if I calculate that correctly if we run our lights for an average of 12hrs a day 7 days a week thats a life span of 833 days.

That cant be correct. Unless they are talking about how long it will take the light to burn out.
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Old 05-25-2002, 11:50 PM   #9
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CSL, recommends changing PC bulbs every 14 months, I don't know what the difference would be between daylights and actinics. I have seen people's tanks that have had their bulbs running for three years 8O , but the degredation of spectrum and intensity was immensly visible. The inverts were surviving, and I use that word in it's most basic form.
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Old 06-17-2002, 12:09 AM   #10
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Well I replaced my bulbs with bulbs I got from hellolights.com I must say the change is tremendious.

The new PC actinics sure look (not a good judge) true actinic vs the old PC "blue bulbs".
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